Showing posts with label Arizona. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Arizona. Show all posts

March 29, 2019

LGBT Groups Sue Arizona Over a New Instruction Law on HIV/AIDS


PHOENIX — LGBT groups sued Arizona Thursday asking a federal judge to strike down a state law prohibiting HIV and AIDS instruction that “promotes a homosexual lifestyle.”
The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Equality Arizona, alleges the 1991 law constitutes unconstitutional discrimination and restricts the educational opportunity for LGBT students. It says it enshrines in state law that LGBT students can only be discussed in a negative light and communicates to students and teachers “that there is something so undesirable, shameful, or controversial about ‘homosexuality’ that any positive portrayals of LGBTQ people or same-sex relationships must be explicitly barred.”
Arizona is one of seven states with laws prohibiting the promotion of homosexuality. The Arizona law prohibits HIV and AIDS instruction that “promotes a homosexual lifestyle,” ‘’portrays homosexuality as a positive alternative lifestyle” or “suggests that some methods of sex are safe methods of homosexual sex.” 
Critics say such laws stigmatize lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and create a state-sanctioned climate of discrimination.
“Arizona is stigmatizing and demeaning LGBTQ students and preventing them from getting medically-accurate information that literally could save their lives,” said Puneet Cheema, a staff attorney with Lambda Legal, a legal advocacy group for LGBT rights.
Lambda Legal filed the suit along with the National Center for Lesbian Rights in U.S. District Court in Tucson. It names Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman and the state Board of Education as defendants.
Hoffman, a Democrat, has previously called on lawmakers to repeal the law.
“I welcome the opportunity this lawsuit brings to educate the public and bring visibility to the issues as we continue the march toward equality,” Hoffman said in a statement.
Her spokesman, Stefan Swiat, said Hoffman “does not have plans to defend it at this time.”
Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

March 20, 2019

A Mob of 10 Men Attacks a Gay Man in Arizona

Phoenix assault
 A gay man in Phoenix says he was attacked by several people on Friday night in a case that police are now investigating, a local Arizona CBS affiliate reports. 
Cesar Marin, the survivor of the attack, says that he felt someone hit him from behind and on his side.
“I didn’t know that I was surrounded by people,” he told 3TV/CBS5. The attack occurred in downtown Phoenix. Marin was driving home when a woman jaywalked in front of his car, prompting him to push his brakes.
Marin said in a public Facebook post that the woman walked to the side of his vehicle, flicked a cigarette at his face then called him a faggot.

Marin said that he did a U-turn and pulled over and got out of his car to search for the lit cigarette to prevent a fire. That’s when he was attacked.
“Before I knew it, I was surrounded in a hail of punches. One guy kicked me in the face when I fell down,” Marin says. He added that the attackers broke his nose and he now has several bruises.
Marin says a bystander intervened and he was taken to the hospital.
According to Marin, there are decals on his car that have rainbows on them, meaning the woman may have been able to tell just from his car that he was gay.
Despite the use of the slur, Phoenix police have not confirmed that they’re treating the case as a hate crime, according to 3TV/CBS5.
Marin’s story comes less than a month after a Salt Lake City man caught his homophobic assault on camera. 

October 24, 2017

68 of 506 Arizona Cities Earned Perfect Scores on LGBT Equality

An annual report of how well American cities are ensuring equality for LGBT people was released Thursday and shows 68 of 506 cities earned perfect scores, including Phoenix, Tempe and Tucson. 

Nationally, 11 cities scored zero points. None were in Arizona, although Avondale, Gilbert and Peoria earned the lowest local scores.

The sixth annual Municipal Equality Index is compiled by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and the Equality Federation Institute.

Cities were judged based on: 

*Non-discrimination laws.
*Municipal-employee benefits.
*Anti-bullying policies and city involvement with the LGBT community.
*Law-enforcement involvement with the LGBT community.
*Leadership on LGBT equality such as LGBT people in leadership roles.

The high scores for Phoenix, Tempe and Tucson come despite Arizona having no statewide LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination laws.

"Cities big and small, in red and blue states alike, are continuing our progress toward full equality, regardless of the political drama unfolding in Washington, D.C., and in state legislatures across the country,” Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin said in a statement with the report's release.  

Top Arizona cities

The effort toward equality gained ground in 2014 when Arizona and other states were forced to make same-sex marriage legal after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that bans in place were unconstitutional.

In September, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples have the same parental rights as opposite-sex couples. 

Democratic state lawmakers have sought to extend non-discrimination protections to include sexual orientation and gender identity, without success.

However, some local governments have moved public policies forward. Most recently, the Pima County Board of Supervisors banned conversion therapy, which attempts to change a person from being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. 

MORE: Mesa calls adoption of anti-discrimination Unity Pledge a message of diversity

Tucson, in 1999, became the first Arizona city to pass an anti-discrimination ordinance protecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender residents and city workers.  Phoenix followed suit 13 years later, and Tempe voters approved gay and lesbian protections in 2014. 

"So proud to be celebrating Tempe's perfect score today," Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell said on Thursday, adding it is the fourth year in a row the city has received the accolade. 

"Let's also remember that the fight for equality is far from over," the mayor said.  

Xavier Persad, legislative counsel for the Human Rights Campaign and author of the report, said cities are leading the charge.  

"Cities across the nation are leading the path forward on LGBTQ equality," Persad said. "Inclusive cities send a clear message."

Phoenix Pride President Mark Leeper said inclusive policies are more than just good for business. "This is about ensuring that everyone is on the same playing field," he said.

, The Republic |

September 14, 2014

Intolerant face Jan Brewer Looses to Judge who Allows The Gay Union on Death Certificate of Vet

 picture not retouched of jan Brewer

In a ruling that calls into question Arizona's gay marriage ban, a judge handed a victory Friday to a gay man who lost his spouse to cancer last month and was denied death benefits because the state prohibits same-sex unions.
U.S. District Judge John Sedwick allowed Fred McQuire to be listed on his spouse's death certificate, marking another development in the national debate over gay marriage as state and federal judges across the country have struck down bans in more than a dozen states at a rapid rate since a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year.                     UPDATE
Friday's decision only applied to McQuire, but the judge signaled that Arizona's gay marriage ban may not hold up after he hears a broader challenge to the constitutionality of the law.
"The court has not yet decided whether there is a conflict between Arizona law and the Constitution, but the court has decided that it is probable that there is such a conflict that Arizona will be required to permit same-sex marriages," said Sedwick, who was nominated to the federal bench in 1992 by President George H.W. Bush.
A death certificate listing McQuire as the surviving spouse of George Martinez was issued late Friday afternoon at a state records office in Tucson, one of McQuire's lawyers said.
McQuire and Martinez were partners of 45 years who got married in California this summer, fulfilling one of their final wishes as they both dealt with serious health issues. Martinez, a Vietnam War veteran, was in the throes of pancreatic cancer blamed on exposure to Agent Orange when they got married, calling it "demeaning and unfair" to have to go to another state to exchange their vows.
Martinez died in late August, but his spouse was unable to receive Social Security and veteran benefits because Arizona bans gay marriage.
Sedwick quickly issued an order granting McQuire's request to be listed on Martinez's death certificate as the surviving spouse, which McQuire hoped would qualify him for the federal benefits. But Sedwick said federal regulations unrelated to the legality of gay marriage mean McQuire will not be able to succeed in getting the benefits.
The request from the couple from Green Valley, Arizona, was made as part of a lawsuit in which 19 people are challenging the state's ban on same-sex marriages. The lawsuit alleges that the ban violates the U.S. Constitution.
Arizona lawmakers approved a state law barring same-sex marriages in 1996. Seven years later, an Arizona appeals court upheld the constitutionality of the law. Voters in 2008 amended the Arizona Constitution to include a ban.
Cathi Herrod, president of the Center for Arizona Policy, which led a coalition of groups that pushed for the 2008 law, said in a statement that the decision was driven by politics, not constitutional law. She said Sedwick "has joined the judicial stampede of other lower federal judges who have tried to override or ignore marriage laws based on no precedent other than their own political bias."
Ohio has an ongoing case that's similar to the McQuire situation. Two gay men whose spouses were dying sued to win the right to be listed as the surviving spouses on their husbands' death certificates and for their spouses to be listed as having been married. A ruling on this case is pending before the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Before the ruling, McQuire, 69, wiped away tears as he talked outside court about the disappointment of being told by government officials that he wasn't considered Martinez's lawful husband. He said he was expecting that kind of reaction, but it still hurt deeply. "It doesn't make it easier," McQuire said.
"George would have loved to have been here today," McQuire said outside court, still wearing a gold and diamond wedding ring on his left hand.
McQuire issued a written statement after the ruling was handed down. "No one else should have to deal with the pain and humiliation of not being able to take care of something as simple and sensitive as a death certificate for their spouse," he said.
"George would have been thrilled with this outcome. All he ever wanted to do was take care of Fred and Judge Sedwick's order will make sure his last wish is fulfilled," said Lambda Legal attorney Jennifer C. Pizer, who argued the case in court for McQuire.
James Campbell, a lawyer arguing on behalf of the state, said McQuire's request should be rejected, arguing that he can always have the death certificate amended if the courts overturn the ban on same-sex marriage. Campbell also said granting this request would open up the doors for others to make similar requests.
The judge had sided with the state in ruling that McQuire hadn't shown irreparable harm based on the financial consequences of not having his marriage recognized in Arizona. But he ruled that McQuire demonstrated that he faced irreparable emotional harm because his marriage wasn't recognized in Arizona while he was the midst of his grief.
“McQuire likely faces irreparable emotional harm by being denied this dignity and status as he grieves Martinez’s death," the judge wrote.

March 2, 2014

Holly Nuts What’s Up with Arizona

IN THE end, death came decisively. After days of feverish speculation, on February 26th Jan Brewer, Arizona’s Republican governor, vetoed SB 1062, a bill passed by the legislature a week earlier that would have allowed private businesses to cite religious beliefs as a defence against lawsuits over discriminatory treatment. Although the law made no mention of sexuality it was widely, and correctly, interpreted as a licence for business owners or their employees to deny service to gays. Large corporations, local business groups and Republican bigwigs had fallen over themselves urging Ms Brewer to ditch the law. A group of Hispanic lawyers scrapped plans to hold a convention in Phoenix, the state capital; other boycotts, including of the Super Bowl in Glendale next year, might well have followed.
To have signed the law would thus have amounted to a huge provocation. Still, Ms Brewer, who has not made courting minority groups a signature theme of her administration, was surprisingly full-throated in her rejection of SB 1062, saying it could have divided the state in ways that “we cannot even imagine”. That seems right; the law’s wording was worryingly vague.
 Other states are considering religious-freedom laws like Arizona’s, and SB 1070 inspired similar legislation elsewhere. So why does Arizona take all the heat? Partly because it tends to go farthest; and also because it displays a peculiar inability to cope with the conundrums of modernity. Comparisons of SB 1062 to Jim Crow never seemed right, because Arizona differs from the conservative states of the south-east; it has a libertarian streak and is slowly turning leftwards, thanks in part to a growing Latino population. Gay-marriage proponents see it as a riper target than the states of the Confederacy. No other border state felt it necessary to pass SB 1070-style legislation. But Arizona’s legislators ploughed on regardless. (The state legislature is one of America’s most polarised.)But it is becoming hard to ignore the singular ability of Arizona’s legislators to bring national scorn upon themselves by passing nasty, ill-considered legislation. The row over SB 1062 comes less than four years after the passage of SB 1070, a law Ms Brewer did sign that empowered state police to enforce federal immigration law and which, say critics, encouraged racial profiling. (The Supreme Court struck down most of its provisions before it went into effect.)
Yet as the gay-marriage juggernaut rolls on, the Arizona row does provide a useful reminder that social conservatism remains a potent political force. Most Americans back gay marriage, but most also say it violates their religious beliefs. The pace of such change is unprecedented; the absence of a backlash would be a surprise. The difficulty for conservatives is that their rational contentions—that gay unions are bad for children, or the institution of marriage—have, one by one, been weighed in courts and rejected. And so they have retreated to the realm of faith, where there is no obligation to provide argument, merely to demonstrate sincerity of belief.
The Arizona law, and similar bills elsewhere, appear to have been motivated by lawsuits against businesses that refused to provide services (photography, cakes) to gay couples on religious grounds. Federal law does provide for protection of religious sensibility, and states that allow gay weddings do not force places of worship to host them. It is not immediately obvious why such protections should not extend to the private sector; as defenders of Arizona’s law argued, they do not shed their faith when they leave church on Sunday.
Still, that argument is probably better played out in the market than the courts. Hard cases, as the saying goes, make bad law. The irony is that none of these hard cases happened to take place in Arizona—and the state still made a bad law.

February 27, 2014

The Fat Republican Lady Sang Brewer Vetoes Anti Gay Ban

 Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer said Wednesday that she has vetoed a bill that would have allowed businesses that asserted their religious beliefs the right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers.
Opinions have been sharply divided over the politically charged measure, with both sides ramping up pressure on Brewer after the state's Republican-led legislature approved the bill last week.
Brewer said she made the decision she knew was right for her state.
"I call them as I see them, despite the cheers or the boos from the crowd," she said, calling the bill "broadly worded" and saying it could have unintended consequences.
Her announcement spurred cheering and hugs by protesters of the bill in Phoenix.
The measure, known as SB 1062, would have given Arizona businesses that assert their religious beliefs the right to deny service to gay and lesbian customers.
Opponents said it encouraged discrimination against gays and lesbians, while supporters argued it allowed for religious freedom.
Brewer returned home on Tuesday from a weekend in Washington with her state roiling over a values clash between arch conservatives and gay rights advocates. The state battle has national implications, as the issues it deals with play out in different ways in courts, state legislatures and on Main Street across the country.
The Arizona measure is particularly pointed and has vocal supporters behind it. They contend it's their legal right to oppose what they see as a gay-rights agenda nationally.
Opinion: Why I put this sign in my pizzeria window
In addition to gay rights organizations, many businesses have sharply criticized the measure, saying it would be bad for Arizona's economy and could lead to discrimination lawsuits, boycotts and other disruptions.
Before she vetoed the bill, Brewer wouldn't reveal her intentions in an interview with CNN on Monday in Washington, where she attended a meeting of governors.
"I can assure you, as always, I will do the right thing for the state of Arizona," she said.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer weighs options on anti-gay measure
Economic concerns
The bill also drew fire from some Republican lawmakers with generally social conservative beliefs.
Arizona Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake publicly urged Brewer to veto the measure, citing worries about the economic impact on the state's businesses.
Former Massachusetts governor and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney recently tweeted that a veto of the bill was the right course.
Romney weighs in, Obama silent on Arizona SB 1062
 Yarbrough: The distortion is stunning Who is behind the Ariz. anti-gay bill? LZ to Cuccinelli: You're a homophobe McCain: Anti-gay law hurts Arizona
Large businesses including Apple, American Airlines, AT&T, and Intel voiced opposition, and the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee expressed concerns.
State Rep. Heather Carter, one of three state house Republicans who voted against this bill, said her phone started ringing as soon as it passed the state's Senate.
A "groundswell" of phone calls and e-mails from friends, family, and other people she respects, she said, told her "you can't vote for this bill, it's a bad bill."
This reaction, she said, told her something. She could not vote for the bill if there was "even the off-chance that discrimination could happen."
But supporters of the bill have been just as vocal.
The measure, which was pushed by the Center for Arizona Policy, a conservative group opposed to abortion and same-sex marriage, has also drawn staunch support from those who say the federal courts have increasingly pushed a pro-gay rights agenda.
Freedom or oppression? That's the question for Arizona's SB 1062
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said on his show that Brewer is "being bullied by the homosexual lobby in Arizona and elsewhere" on the measure.
A double standard?
Supporters also see, in the opposition, a double standard in how the rights of gays and lesbians are supported versus those who have conservative religious views.
 Finding lawmakers to defend SB-1062 Conservative groups back Ariz. bill Is Brewer being 'bullied' to veto bill? CEO: Arizona is a welcoming state
"I think what we need to do is respect both sides. We need to respect both opinions," Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann said Wednesday. “ ust like we need to observe tolerance for the gay and lesbian community, we need to have tolerance for the community of people who hold sincerely held religious beliefs."  
CNN’s Leigh Ann Caldwell, Ana Cabrera and Dana Bash contributed to this report.

Editorial and comments from the publisher:SEE: adamfoxie: When Republican Fat Lady Sings

It took her a few (maddening) days, but Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) did the right thing. She vetoed that horrible bill that would have made it legal to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people by claiming that doing so violated their “sincerely held religious beliefs.” But this sensible and just end isn’t the best part of all this.
Never before have I seen such full-throated tri-partisan opposition to a piece of anti-gay legislation. By tri-partisan I mean Democrats, Republicans and corporations. That Democrats were against the measure was a no-brainer. That Republicans and businesses joined them to not only decry the bill’s passage bill but to also demand that Brewer veto it was remarkable.
Arizona’s two U.S. Senators, John McCain (R) and Jeff Flake (R), urged Brewer to veto the bill. Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, did the same. Three state Senators who voted for the noxious statute changed their minds. In a letter to Brewer last Friday, the head of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council warned that the “legislation will likely have profound, negative effects on our business community for years to come.”
Because next year’s Super Bowl is set to kick off in Glendale, Ariz., the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee released a statement to declare “We do not support this legislation.” It added, “We share the NFL’s core values which embrace tolerance, diversity, inclusiveness and prohibit discrimination.” Meanwhile, the NFLspokesperson said yesterday, “We are following the issue in Arizona and will continue to do so should the bill be signed into law.” And then there was the cavalcade of corporations, including Apple, Marriott and American Airlines, that reached out to Brewer’s office to urge a veto. Delta Airlines was more blunt in discussing what might happen if SB 1062 is signed into law.

The comments from professional gays and gays on the sides that don’t follow stories until something big comes out and then the comments are sad because they lock background information of the why and how come this or that happened. But setting that on the sides the conversation is been great and representing who we are, a very diverse community with no two alike even though we are portrayed that way. There is one thing in which the community got together in unionism about no more to the closet and no more abuses. You wont sell me a cake for my wedding if you know Im gay or you wont allowed me stay in your motel because you believe Im corrupted and will corrupt your bed.

You have a right to believe that but if you are going to have a public business is going to be for the public and you can’t keep me out if Im just a customer with his money to pay.
That is part of the argument on the Arizona gay ban bill the Gov Brewer’s Veto. 

Let this fool no one that Gov. Brewer is a hater governor tied down to the tea party. However because she is not a super good candidate she needs help from her party on those pesky elections, The core of the Republican party believes that the fight for gay rights in this country, what ever they are is lost. They know they most get on the train before it leaves the station but you have this massive power in money and strings from the evangelicals, they are so powerful that they help make laws in Russia, Uganda, Cameroon to execute gays or put them in jail for ever. 

Just because they are gay and the government thinks is against the Bible the bible they themselves don’t follow.These are the type of people behind the stubborn non common sense battle we fight in the trenches of the halls of governments and court houses in the southern states, where they are based. 

They have a non stop money producing cow with their TV channels and shows asking for donations in the US and around the world. They are involved in programs  “Like’save’ the children” and many others, They try to save the children but they have to take their cut which will always be over 20% and more close to 60%.

The power that they hold is enough to make the Republicans buckle on negotiations on the budget and produce all these strings attached on bans on the state constitutions against gays. Bans that have and will not prevail in court and will be struck down like in Texas and others.

It’s prudent that when someone makes the right decision one should be padded in the back. I personally will not pad in the back a snake that decided not to bite me. Thanks Ms.Anaconda but lunch with a mouse or goat I wont buy you, just in case you going back to being a vicious snake. 

Of all the Governors with the exception of may be Texas, on the 50 states she has been the most vicious against, gay rights, marriage,immigration, helping the poor, schools, housing, medical care.
She will still be against us but probably with less speeches  condemning us. But conversion for this woman is not possible unless she has a gay relative no one knows about. She will still be that Republican Governor that bucked to her interest not to her conscience.

Thank you for reading. The door is open for any comments below.
Adam Gonzalez 

In Depth Reporting in chronological order on Page 10 :

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